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Jamaicans Wonder if Government’s Allegiance is to the People or the Powerful

Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller

Any political administration that had the good fortune to use its electoral advantage over other political parties and hold power for close to 19 years straight would find that almost all institutions in that country would be overrun with those at the top, in-between, and those at the base having active allegiance to the party.

The PNP pretty much “captured” Jamaica in the period February 1989 to September 2007 when it held unbroken power. Had the JLP existed on another planet close to Earth, it would quite probably have had a similar long drawn-out, boring but somehow effective political orgasm.

This means that the longer a political party stays in power, the longer it has to consolidate the power connections among the affluent strata, including business interests, and the longer time it has at its disposal to convince the many who are looking in from the outside that the Opposition party is quite redundant.

I have never been convinced that political parties such as the PNP and JLP exist for the pure purpose of advancing the interests of the people of this country.

First, there are people with clout; that is, with financial power and broad influence, and then there are the poor who are mostly thought to be gullible, based on their predictable voting patterns. In other words, the politician needs the votes of the blind and gullible to empower him to empower those whose only desire is an increase in their relevance and quiet control over the country. It is done and is euphemistically called democracy.

Slap in the middle is the middle class, which is composed mostly of people who wish that they could go to bed tonight and when next they awake, the problems would evaporate and they could get to feel safer knowing that when their children walk the streets after 6 pm, they will be safe.

Basically, the vote of the middle class is increasingly insignificant because too many of them are cowards and convinced that all they have to do is withdraw from the process…

Read more:Mark Wignall, Jamaica Observer

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